Public Bank Quantum Visa & Mastercard Review 2018: Essential Cashback Credit Cards

by Pang Tun Yau

Cash Back Credit Cards

Public Bank Quantum Visa & Mastercard Review 2018: Essential Cashback Credit Cards

Ever since Maybank released its Maybankard 2 Gold and Platinum credit cards, few have been able to challenge them as the “must-have” credit cards thanks to the cards’ low entry point and solid benefits. Now, here’s a genuine contender – from Public Bank, of all places.

Quantum Leap by Public Bank

Public Bank isn’t popular for its credit cards, and even less so among youths. But with the Quantum Visa and Mastercard, Public Bank specifically designed its benefits to cater to the “Gen Y” of Malaysia, which it believes will be the main economy driver for the country.

Interestingly, Public Bank offers the Quantum cards as a Visa and Mastercard combo; apply for one and you’ll get the other. The two cards both offer 5% cashback, but for different categories and capped at RM30 per card. Therefore, the maximum theoretical cashback you can receive every month is RM60.

You will need to keep in mind the categories that apply to the two cards. The Public Bank Quantum Visa card offers cashback for Entertainment and Departmental Stores transactions, while the Public Bank Quantum Mastercard offers cashback for Dining and Online transactions. The cashback is capped per card, and not per category, so do keep that in mind.

On top of that, you also earn VIP points that can be redeemed for various products as well as air miles. For local spending, you get 1 VIP point for every RM1, while you get 2 VIP points for every RM1 spent overseas. For reference, 7,000 VIP points can be converted to 1,000 Enrich miles or 2,000 AirAsia BIG Points.

Most importantly, the Public Bank Quantum Visa and Mastercard is free for life! No minimum swipes, no minimum spending required.

Entry-level requirements

The Public Bank Quantum credit cards are designed as entry-level cards, and the only requirement is a low minimum annual income of RM36,000 – that’s RM3,000 a month. Granted, most entry-level cards have a lower minimum income requirement (such as the Maybankard 2 Gold and the CIMB Cash Rebate Platinum Mastercard), but the benefits of the Quantum cards are on par with the Maybankard 2 Gold, and superior to the CIMB Cash Rebate Platinum Mastercard.

Public Bank Quantum vs Maybankard 2 Gold

So it does come to this. Between the Public Bank Quantum and the Maybankard 2 Gold, which is the better credit card?

Let’s first look at the Maybankard 2 Gold. This is a very popular card for a reason: the American Express card offers 5% cashback on almost any transaction and offers 5X Treats Points for every RM1 spent. The cashback is capped at RM50 per month and only applies on weekends, but that’s not a hard figure to hit when the cashback is eligible for virtually all types of spending (the only exceptions are for government- and education-related payments).

The Maybankard 2 Gold also has a lower minimum annual income at RM30,000 (RM2,500 a month), and the Amex card can be used to get cashback for petrol transactions – the Quantum cards do not offer cashback for this category.

On the other hand, the Public Bank Quantum credit cards can be used any day of the week to be eligible for cashback (as long as you use the right card for the right category). And while it is becoming more commonly accepted, there are still a significant number of places that do not accept Amex cards. 

All things considered, perhaps it shouldn’t be “Public Bank Quantum vs Maybankard 2 Gold”, but rather “Public Bank Quantum and Maybankard 2 Gold”.

Verdict: The best entry-level credit card combination for cashback

The Public Bank Quantum credit cards are a really useful complement to the Maybankard 2 Gold. Tailoring your use of these two (or technically four) cards allows you to maximise your cashback every month, while still accumulating rewards points. You just need to remember to use the right card based on the category of purchase – but you’ll get the hang of it over time.

Whether or not you have the Maybankard 2 Gold cards, the Public Bank Quantum cards are worth getting on its own. This card is also free-for-life, which means there are no annual fees to worry about. And finally, you can also get a free RM200 Giant voucher when you apply for the Public Bank Quantum credit card via RinggitPlus!